Aristotelian Subjectivism: Francisco Suarez's Philosophy of Perception
Aristotelian Subjectivism: Francisco Suarez’s Philosophy of Perception
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This monograph presents new material on Francisco Suarez’s comprehensive theory of sense perception. The core theme is perceptual intentionality in Suarez’s theory of the senses, external and internal, as presented in his Commentaria una cum quaestionibus in libros Aristotelis De anima published in 1621. The author targets the question of the multistage genesis of perceptual acts by considering the ontological items involved in the procession of sensory information. However, the structural issue is not left aside, and the nature of the relationship due to which our perceptions are mental representations of this or that object is also considered.
The heuristic historiographical background includes not only the theories of classical authors, such as Aristotle and Aquinas, but also those of late medieval authors of the fourteenth century. These are headed by John Duns Scotus, John of Jandun, Peter Auriol and Peter John Olivi. Readers will discover the differences between Suarez’s and Aquinas’s views, as well as other sources that may have served as positive inspiration for the Jesuit’s theory. By considering the late medieval philosophy of the fourteenth century, this book helps, to a certain extent, to fill a gap in the historiography of philosophy regarding the link between late medieval and early modern scholasticism.
In the first part of the book, the metaphysics of the soul and powers is considered. Chapters on the external senses follow, covering topics such as the sensible species, the causes of sensation, self-awareness, and the ordering of the external senses. A further chapter is devoted to the internal senses and the author argues that by reducing the number and functional scope of the interior senses Suarez deepens the gap between the external senses and the intellect, but he reduces it through emphasizing the unifying efficacy of the soul.This book brings a synthetic and unifying perspective to contemporary research and will particularly appeal to graduate students and researchers in theology and philosophy, especially philosophy of mind.
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